Health care providers place a growing emphasis on physical fitness for kids. One way for children to stay healthy is to play sports. Sports also help children develop social skills and practice teamwork. However, tough competition and pressure to fit too much into an already packed schedule are reasons for kids to shy away from sports. It is important to review the pros and cons of sports for kids before deciding if signing your child up is the right choice.
If your child plays a team sport, he will quickly learn the art of sportsmanship, sharing credit and sharing responsibility. The website Education claims that when a child is part of a team, he will learn to think about doing what is best for the group as opposed to focusing only on himself. Team sports help children drop any self-centered attitudes they may have. Children on teams also discover the positive feelings associated with cheering others on and feeling proud of teammates’ accomplishments, as well as their own.
Many kids find stress relief on the field. Kids Health claims that when people exercise or play sports, the brain releases chemicals that improve their moods. If your child is feeling pressure in the classroom, sports may be the answer. Sports are also fun. Playing on a team with friends is a fun way to take a break from the pressures kids feel in school. Sports makes kids feel happy.
Too Much Pressure
Some kids don’t find relief from stress on the field; they actually feel more stress there. The American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry claims that the highly competitive world of collegiate and professional sports has carried over into the children’s sports arena. Some coaches, parents and even kids put too much emphasis on winning. This can be too stressful for some children. It is wise to consider your child’s personality and her ability to handle stress before allowing her to participate on a team.
Some children can’t recognize when they need a break or are too shy to ask for one. The Mayo Clinic warns parents that children don’t handle hot weather as well as adults do. They don’t sweat as much as adults d,o and they produce more heat. They also often drink less than they should. This combination could spell dehydration. If you don’t think your child will recognize the signs of dehydration or stop for a water break, you may want to make sure he avoids sports that require activity in hot weather.
Do you know what my favorite part of the game is? The opportunity to play. -Mike Singletary